Sunday, March 4, 2012

Phil McColeman Used American Robo-call Company

Last election, Phil McColeman used Front Porch Strategies, a U.S. robocall company.
We know that Phil McColeman paid Front Porch Strategies during the 2011 election campaign (directly contrary to what Stephen Harper claimed in Parliament).

We know that Phil has used Front Porch Strategies to host tele-townhalls.

We now need to know whether Phil also used Front Porch Strategies to call voters. We need to know for a couple of reasons:

First, it is hypocritical for Phil to use a U.S. company while he spends so much time talking about creating jobs for Canadians. In fact, there's a great call centre in downtown Brantford. Why does Phil use an American company instead of contributing to Canadian jobs?

Second, Front Porch Strategies does most of its work for the Republican Party. If Phil is using a Republican call centre, it is just importing into Canada the dirty, opportunistic, U.S.-style political tactics that Phil himself has criticized in the past.
Third, if Phil used Front Porch to deliver automated phonecalls, perhaps he used the calls to send Liberal/NDP voters to non-existent voting locations. As the Robo-call scandal deepens, we need to know if Phil was involved

Phil needs to come clean on the extent of his involvement with Front Porch Strategies. And if he has any balls, he should also call for a public inquiry into the Robo-call election fraud.


Unknown said...

Lot of "ifs" here. Most federal and provincial campaigns use dialer services now (not just Conservative either, but also Liberal, NDP and Green) and there have not been complaints of misleading use of these services in the vast majority of ridings.

I've been a campaign manager several times...campaigns use these phone services to reach voters because it's so difficult to get live people to volunteer to canvass anymore. In the '70s or '80s a succesful campaign would have 500 or 600 workers. Now you're lucky to get 120 people to volunteer. If we could overcome voter apathy and get people back involved with their political parties.....we wouldn't need to rely so much on technology to do voter contact.

fordian said...

The day after I wrote this post, Phil was featured in the Expositor denying "dirty tricks" (see ). Fair enough. However there are at least two problems with his attitude:

1) Election fraud is not "dirty tricks". Dirty tricks includes stuffing your campaign flyers in the mail slot of your opponent in the middle of the night. What happened in Election 41 is an outright destructive act against democracy.

2) Phil says we should "ferret out" those who committed these acts. That's not enough. There should be a whole-hog judicial inquiry. These were grave acts and the perpetrators have done a good job of covering their tracks. Phil needs to stand up for democracy and call for an inquiry.

fordian said...

One more point: Unknown, I agree compeletely that voter apathy needs to be overcome. That's a problem that transcends party lines.

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